BBC news 2011-08-28

BBC News with Marion Marshall

Rebel leaders in Libya say they believe Colonel Gaddafi may still be hiding somewhere near the capital Tripoli. It's the first indication from the opposition of where they think the ousted leader may be. Jon Leyne reports from Benghazi.

Shamsuddin Ben Ali, director of communications for the opposition National Transitional Council, said they believed that Colonel Gaddafi was most likely still in the Tripoli area. The spokesman said that if Colonel Gaddafi had escaped the capital, he could have fled to the Algerian border. Algeria is the last of the neighbouring countries that might give him sanctuary. Already, said the spokesman, it's possible that Colonel Gaddafi's wife and daughter may have fled there, though earlier reports of a heavily armoured convoy of six cars making its way across the border have been denied on all sides. The opposition do not think Colonel Gaddafi himself has left the country, nor do they think he's in his hometown of Sirte, where his supporters are putting up a tough stand against opposition fighters.

More evidence is emerging of atrocities during the battle for Tripoli. The French news agency AFP is reporting more than 50 charred skeletons at a makeshift prison in the south of the city.

President Obama has warned Americans they are facing a tough slog to cope with a hurricane that's raging its way up the east coast of the United States. The president was speaking to emergency officials responding to Hurricane Irene, which has already caused floods and brought down power lines in North Carolina.

"It's going to be a long 72 hours, and obviously a lot of families are going to be affected. The biggest concern I'm having right now has to do with flooding and power. It sounds like that's going to be an enormous strain."

The storm is expected to hit New York City on Sunday. From Manhattan, Steve Kingstone reports.

Here in New York, 300,000 people have been told to leave their homes. It's part of an unprecedented evacuation order, which takes in this area - Battery Park City at the very southern tip of Manhattan; Wall Street is just a few blocks away. I'm seeing boats in the marina being tethered up. And the working assumption of the city authorities is that when Irene really hits New York on Sunday morning, these low-lying areas could flood.

A senior United States official has said the second-in-command of al-Qaeda has been killed in Pakistan. The official was speaking anonymously to reporters. Last month, the US Defence Secretary Leon Panetta said America was within reach of defeating al-Qaeda by targeting its leaders. Marcus George reports from Washington.

The unnamed official said that Atiyah Abd al-Rahman was killed five days ago in the Pakistani tribal region of Waziristan. There's no word on how he died, but it's likely to have been the result of a strike from an unmanned drone. The official described the Libyan national as a key figure in directing al-Qaeda's operations, saying he'd become the organisation's second-in-command. It was a tremendous loss, he said, coming so soon after the death of Osama Bin Laden.

World News from the BBC

The Indian parliament has adopted a non-binding resolution supporting demands for stronger anti-corruption laws by the campaigner Anna Hazare. Mr Hazare, who's been on hunger strike for nearly two weeks, has said he'll formally end his fast on Sunday. Sanjoy Majumder reports from Delhi.

As news of the resolution filtered through, cheers broke out among the thousands of people who'd gathered at a public park in the capital where Mr Hazare has been fasting for the past 12 days. It's a massive victory for the man, whom many are comparing to India's independence leader Mahatma Gandhi. With public opinion squarely behind him, India's elected politicians had little choice but to fall in line, despite misgiving that Mr Hazare's actions were undermining the country's parliamentary democracy.

The head of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, has again warned of the risk of the global economy falling back into recession. Speaking at a gathering of international policymakers in the United States, Mrs Lagarde called for coordinated action with long-term plans to bring debt under control.

Football fans in Italy have been angered by a strike that's delayed the start of the new season by at least two weeks. Players in the first division are protesting at being asked to pay a new super tax on high earners imposed by the Italian government as part of its latest austerity package. But as Mark Duff reports from Milan, the Italian public doesn't have much sympathy.

"Own Goal," reads the headline on Italy's best-selling sports newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport. The players have shown, it says, a total disregard for millions of loyal football fans. It's a sentiment echoed in the Internet chat rooms. The players, says a contributor on one site, should be ashamed of themselves. Politicians, too, have been joining in. One senior government minister from the regionalist Northern League says the players represent the very worst of the spoiled cast of celebrity millionaires.

Mark Duff reporting

BBC News.